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Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 


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Using the Parallax RFID Reader 

with an Arduino 

Written By: Riley Porter 


Alligator test/jumper cable set (1) 


Parallax RFID Reader (1) 
Arduino microcontroller (1) 


If you've ever wanted the ability to use some form of hardware-based authentication in your 
projects then this is the board to do it with. The Parallax RFID (Radio Frequency 
Identification) reader is super easy to configure. It only takes four wires! It uses serial 
protocol to transfer information from RFID cards to the Arduino. This project is a quick 
introduction to using this RFID reader with the Arduino system. 

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Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 

Step 1 — Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 

• This step is simple. Just gather up 
your needed components. You will 

• Four jumper wires 

• Parallax RFID reader 

• Arduino development board 

• Optional breadboard 

• That's it! Moving on.... 

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Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 

Step 2 

• Wire the RFID reader to the Arduino. Follow the pin mapping text below. 

• Arduino Rx = RFID Squt 

• Arduino D2 = RFID Enable 

• Arduino GND = RFID GND 

• Arduino 5v = RFID V cc 

• D2 means digital pin number 2. 

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Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 

Step 3 

ne ltFIG_EN«t.E Z //to RFID RUBLE 

COCE _LEN la ffltet length of CFID loa 

VM.ID«TE_rAG i //sitouLc, » vol. dote tog? 
tut ym.imte_lengih 28B /.'Mxiiwi reads b/n toa rwa and validate 

rtt irePATIOH.LENGTlr. 28B6 //ttkC, In *S, given to the uSCt to »We hntVt flwy 
SrCP.BfTC ffeBD 

vOSd }*tup(> ( 



■*oad IoopO { //Start our win Mttjino Loop 
HMUaRFieQ; //Erajie ww RF!0 card 
seepripraaQ; //Reads the too 
k^isCaMWalidO) ( //Yolldotds thot the tog is gocd 

disobleftf ]b(j; //Puts tre RFID reader in sn lou pwr rat 

»tylCDC*Oi //SeeW tr* code read to the serial pott 

«ldy(ITERATI»(.La«lHji //MBOuneer 
) el,. { 

diedblefcMDQ; ■'.-.:! a i-:-:iplete tude,. 

5eridt.ptidtlii("eot so** noise"); 


Serial. riushQj 

* Clears out the neeory space tar the tog to Se- 
ed eLearCooa{) {_ 
rotfint 1.9; iiQP6_lenj |^> ( 

• Toss some code onto the Arduino. 

• There are MANY different 
versions of Arduino code 
for this RFID reader. However, 
the best code I have seen to 
date was written by Benjamin 
Eckel . I have posted his code on 
my github account for archival 
purposes. You can get it here . 

• Now that the RFID reader is , 
talking to your Arduino, you 

are ready to hack the code up and 
create a really cool project! 

• The sendCode function is 
what one would hack in 
order to use the RFID reader for 
something other than printing the 
tags to a terminal. To fully 
understand the code, you should 
read the datasheet in full. You can 
get it here . 


Step 4 

• That's all there is to it. This is basically a stub and I encourage you to add your own 
experiences with using an RFID reader with an Arduino. 

• Leave your questions and other thoughts using the Make: Projects notes feature. 

Once you are able to connect to and read RFID tags, you are ready to integrate this into a larger 
project. Perhaps an RFID-enabled candy safe? Or an RFID garage door opener? There are many 
options. Good luck! 

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Using the Parallax RFID Reader with an Arduino 

For Arduino news, features, tutorials, a buyer's guide, and more, visit the Make: Arduino page . 

This document was last generated on 2012-10-31 01 :14:49 PM. 

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